Asiatic Potters, India 1938-1939

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1938 – 1939
Titled amateur film: 'Asiatic Potters India 1938-39.' 'Our first Hindu Potter...' etc. Amritsar. 'Miss Paddock, judging the workmanship of the ware.' Good CUs. // Original footage is approximately 400 feet of 16mm film. Film donated to Human Studies Film Archives in exchange for 3/4 inch video master. Transfer done at 18 fps. // 3/4 inch received from Pam Wintle at HSFA, 07/1997.
Title card: 'Our First Hindu Potter Note how he turns his wheel. The only potter we saw who tooled the bottom of his piece.' A potter using a potter’s wheel to make a pot out of clay. He holds up the finished product. Intertitle: 'Marketing the pots Pottery bazaar, Amritzar.' Market stalls selling pottery. Intertitle: 'Potters working in the open as we found them everywhere. Without weighing or measuring, all the posts come out the same size.' Potter working on a street corner, surrounded by shoppers and other market stalls selling pottery. Intertitle: 'A veiled woman shopping in the potters’ bazaar.' A woman in a full veil (burqa) walking through the bazaar. A potter uses a stick to get the potter’s wheel up to speed. Then he throws a pot and adds it to a line of identical pots. Intertitle: 'This potter is making little rice bowls used only once and then thrown away.' A potter working while other people watch. Intertitle: 'Miss Paddock judging the work-manship of the ware.' Miss Paddock examining the pots at a market stall. Intertitle: 'Misti, the Delhi potter, is using a Kick-Wheel the weighted lower wheel being in a pit so Misti can squat in the attitude Asiatics find so comfortable.' A man making pots with a kick-wheel. Intertitle: 'With a mill similar to all native grain mills this woman grinding the raw cobalt ore which is the principal coloring matter of Indian glazes.' A woman hand grinding ore. Intertitle: 'Posed picture of an Indian potter glazing.' A man painting glaze onto a pot while children sit around him. Intertitle: “The Delhi Pottery Works” directed by Sadar Gurcharan Singh. Here Misti does all the throwing.' Men working clay. Misti throwing pots. Intertitle: 'Village potter turning out goods for market. Near Benares.' (Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh) Potter throwing pots on a wheel, surrounded by finished pots. Intertitle: 'A KILN To fire these very thin little bowls they are packed in straw and manure, covered with earth and when the fire burns out they’re done.' Potters dusting off a pile of finished pots. Intertitle: 'Making little banks is a fussier job than the bowls. When leather-dry the wife cuts the coin-slots.' A man making a coin bank on a potter’s wheel. Intertitle: 'Preparing clay – he “sticks in his thumb” etc.' A man kneads clay while another throws a pot on the wheel. [End of Reel]

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